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Category: Guiding Principles

Got Milk? And the Value of Emotional Connection

Got Milk? And the Value of Emotional Connection

Do you remember countless celebrities photographed with the iconic milk mustache from the 90s? That was, essentially, phase two of the Got Milk campaign. We have Goodby, Silverstein, and Partners to thank for phase one and the creation of “Got Milk?” as a campaign. Before that, Milk’s primary campaign was “Milk. It does a body good.” A little “womp womp” if you ask me. According to Fast Company, 80% of consumers came into contact with the “Got Milk?” campaign on…

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Vendors vs. Partners: How to Work with an Outside Delivery Team

Vendors vs. Partners: How to Work with an Outside Delivery Team

Purchasing software is complicated. Meeting with each vendor is time-consuming. It takes time to get a feel for the product. Not to mention the day job you probably have on top of being responsible for acquiring new software solutions. But when you do meet with each vendor, don’t just look for features. Look for partners If you want a tool you’ll replace in a couple of years after investing countless hours implementing it, then, by all means, don’t take my…

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5 Questions to Ask Your Vendor About Services

5 Questions to Ask Your Vendor About Services

When purchasing software and services, it’s easy to overlook what’s included in the services. Because, well, the software is so fancy. But if you are about to purchase software and services together, these five questions will help you get a handle on what you can expect going into the implementation. 1. Do you have a methodology that you adhere to (and can I see it)? If the vendor has done this before, they should have a methodology. This question is intended to…

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Leaving Your Foot In – Adding More Than What’s Needed

Leaving Your Foot In – Adding More Than What’s Needed

The phrase “to leave your foot in” in soccer is analogous to behavior we sometimes see in software implementation. “To leave your foot in means to first go for the ball but continue after the ball has been won, or lost, and kick the opponent. The ‘in‘ in the phrase refers to the tackle, giving ‘in the tackle’. so, if you leave your foot in the tackle, it means your foot is used to catch, kick, or stamp on the opposing player. The…

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The Customer is Always Right

The Customer is Always Right

The Customer is Always Right. One of my Executives mentioned that to me the other day when I was speaking with them about an Irate Customer. The Customer is Always Right. That phrase has haunted me for over 15 years in software implementation. And another ten years in various service industries. That line, however, is Bullshit. The Customer is NOT always Right. Customers are often wrong, and in many cases, they have a financial incentive to ignore data that indicates…

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Do Successful Implementation Leaders Play Candyland or Chess?

Do Successful Implementation Leaders Play Candyland or Chess?

Software Implementation is not like Candyland. Take a card, and move a few spots. Then, take another card, and move another few places. Repeat until the game ends. Implementation is more like chess. It requires an active mind, an understanding of the pieces on the board, an understanding of your opponent (change, in this case), and the flexibility and grit to move around newly found constraints throughout the game. Most importantly, to be good at it, you need to practice….

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Pent up – What to do with Irrational Feedback

Pent up – What to do with Irrational Feedback

We all need a way to deal with irrational feedback. I love how a group of Creatives in Ireland formed Creative Catharsis to handle that kind of feedback. They created hilarious posters featuring some of the ridiculous client feedback they had received over time. Some of these will be familiar if you’ve ever been a Creative. When you implement, you’ll want to create an outlet for handling the irrational elements. Creative outlets, like the one in Ireland, will not solve irrationality, but they will keep you sane….

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War Time vs. Peace Time – Preparing for Implementation Role Change

War Time vs. Peace Time – Preparing for Implementation Role Change

In the last episode of Band of Brothers, a mini-series following the US 101st Airborne Division during World War 2, the troops from Easy Company – who have been through hell and back, are struggling with their new roles. Then, the war is over — no more fighting. No more dying – or so you’d think. But, somehow, the troops continue to die – this time, instead of at the hands of the Germans, they turn on themselves. Easy Company…

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How to Treat your End Users

How to Treat your End Users

When implementing technology – it’s easy to forget this point: Your end users are your customers. If you treat them like your customers and thrill them, they’ll tell everyone! If you don’t – they’ll tell everyone! The above may seem obvious, but it doesn’t take more than five minutes searching the terms “Failed Implementation” to see that it isn’t that obvious. Many failed implementations are focused not on the end-users but on the stakeholders. Software implementations configured for stakeholders do…

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Organizational Change Potential – How to Assess

Organizational Change Potential – How to Assess

Part 1 of 5 When you first commit to taking on a technological change, you’ll need to start somewhere to ensure it’s a success. In the book, A Beautiful Constraint – there is a diagram that references that may help as a starting reference. The chart helps assess whether your company is ready for change. It is particularly relevant to a large organization that bought a new software solution to drive digital transformation. Here’s how to read it regarding software implementation…

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